Carlson group: Molecular mechanisms of signal transduction in heart

Our group aims to identify molecular mechanisms underlying the development of cardiac disease and to develop novel therapeutic approaches to block disease progression.

In particular, our group studies anchored signaling, with focus on the syndecans, calcium/calmodulin-dependent kinase II (CaMKII) and various ion channels and exchangers involved in excitation-contraction coupling; the process which initiates the heartbeat. We are especially interested in understanding changes in the activity of these proteins during heart failure development. We have also some projects focused on examinations of skeletal muscle

During the last years, we have identified novel molecular mechanisms regulating the activities of the sodium-calcium exchanger 1 (NCX1), ryanodine receptor 2 (RYR2), and sarcoplasmic reticulum calcium ATPase 2 (SERCA2), and developed pro-drugs which modulate their activities. Recently, we have also identified the syndecan-2 and syndecan-4 interactomes, and several novel signaling pathways involved in cardiomyocyte growth and fibrosis.

In our projects, we use different molecular biology techniques combined with peptide technology. In particular, we employ Western blotting, immunoprecipitation, cell culture, transfection, mutated proteins, various imaging techniques, mass spectrometry, Biacore, ELISA-based assays, kinase and phosphatase assays, bioinformatics, adenovirus, adeno-associated virus, neonatal and adult cardiomyocytes, peptide arrays, peptide in-solution, and tissue from different animal heart failure models.

Figure 1 (left): (Carlson et al., Circ Res, 130:27–44, 2022)

Figure 2 (right): (Wanichawan et al., Front Pharmacol, 12:638646, 2021) 

The Carlson group consists of scientists from IEMR who work closely with a high-profile network of international and national collaborators, including the core facilities for structural biology, advanced light microscopy and proteomics at Oslo University Hospital.

Group Leader

Cathrine Rein Carlson

Group Leader & Senior Researcher

Group members

Thea Parsberg Støle

Doctoral Research Fellow & Safety representative (VO)

Associated members

Andreas Romaine

Postdoctoral fellow

Ilde Rugolo

Doctoral Research Fellow

Lucie Pejšková

Doctoral Research Fellow

Latest publications

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Pejšková L, Rønning SB, Kent MP, Solberg NT, Høst V, Thu-Hien T, Wold JP, Lunde M, Mosleth E, Pisconti A, Kolset SO, Carlson CR, Pedersen ME (2023)
Characterization of wooden breast myopathy: a focus on syndecans and ECM remodeling
Front Physiol, 14, 1301804
PubMed 38130476 DOI 10.3389/fphys.2023.1301804
Sasi A, Romaine A, Erusappan PM, Melleby AO, Hasic A, Dahl CP, Broch K, Almaas VM, Puertas RD, Roderick HL, Lunde IG, Sjaastad I, Vistnes M, Christensen G (2023)
Temporal expression and spatial distribution of the proteoglycan versican during cardiac fibrosis development
Matrix Biol Plus, 19-20, 100135
PubMed 38076279 DOI 10.1016/j.mbplus.2023.100135
Lunde PK, Manfra O, Støle TP, Lunde M, Martinsen M, Carlson CR, Louch WE (2023)
Polyarginine Cell-Penetrating Peptides Bind and Inhibit SERCA2
Cells, 12 (19)
PubMed 37830576 DOI 10.3390/cells12192358
Aronsen JM, Skogestad J, Albert I, Melleby AO, Carlson CR (2023)
Response by Aronsen et al to Letter Regarding Article, "Disruption of Phosphodiesterase 3A Binding to SERCA2 Increases SERCA2 Activity and Reduces Mortality in Mice With Chronic Heart Failure"
Circulation, 148 (10), 857-858
PubMed 37669357 DOI 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.123.065884
Vistnes M, Erusappan PM, Sasi A, Nordén ES, Bergo KK, Romaine A, Lunde IG, Zhang L, Olsen MB, Øgaard J, Carlson CR, Wang CH, Riise J, Dahl CP, Fiane AE, Hauge-Iversen IM, Espe E, Melleby AO, Tønnessen T, Aronsen JM, Sjaastad I, Christensen G (2023)
Inhibition of the extracellular enzyme A disintegrin and metalloprotease with thrombospondin motif 4 prevents cardiac fibrosis and dysfunction
Cardiovasc Res, 119 (10), 1915-1927
PubMed 37216909 DOI 10.1093/cvr/cvad078
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